Our relationship with India based on fundamental issues

04 March 2021

INDIAN External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar arrives in Dhaka today on a one-day official visit. He will hold discussion with his Bangladesh counterpart on reviving the ministerial-level mechanism of the Joint Rivers Commission for sharing the common river water, bringing down border killing by the Indian Border Security Force, trade connectivity and tariff and non-tariff barriers on our exports, extending rail services to India's Jalpaiguri, supply of Covid-19 vaccine and some other issues. His visit is taking place before the forthcoming visit of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi at the end of this month.
India is among the closest neighbours and strategic partner of Bangladesh in all aspects. India has great influence of Bangladesh government. It is expected that such trusted good relationship with our government should bring good influence to bear upon our enhancement of mutual good relationship. Our government is too much bureaucratic and little accountable to the people. To say in short, that our government is isolated from the people should also be known to Indian government. Friendliness should mean wellbeing for each other.
This closeness of our two countries is seen unfavourably by many because of isolation of the government for its bureaucratic nature. This should not be so. Our people had high hopes from the dawn of independence that a democratic India will have influence favourable to our people's basic hopes and aspirations. The historical foundation of friendship is in our liberation war.
There will be problems and disputes but good relationship will continue. It is never practical to think that all the problems between Bangladesh and India can be solved once for all. There will always be difference and disputes within the bounds of faithful friendship. The important consideration is not where we disagree but where agree as friends for mutual good of the peoples of these two countries.
 But we find the areas of agreement are much less than disagreement. That should be bridged. Why should not there be friendliness for improving democratic relationship between the two countries? We think India has a legitimate interest in the development of democracy in Bangladesh   for its commitment to democracy in the war of liberation.
In dealing with the crisis of refugees forced on us most illegally by Myanmar our friendship with India meant nothing. India's self-interest appeared much more important. The refugees from Myanmar is a humanitarian crisis for the Rohingya Muslims for which that government had to face the charge of genocide in the international of human rights arena.
So our dispute and the difference about internal problems will go on and we have to see how these are solved by the respective governments. We want to see India's friendship reflected on people's fundamental issues and international support.

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